How To Protect Your Phone In Extreme Temperature Conditions

The world is presently experiencing a polar vortex season and temperatures seems to have reduced to as low as -60 degrees Fahrenheit wind chill in some locations. In such severe conditions, you see your iPhone and Android smartphone go off completely when you use it outside your home. This is the case because the battery can’t handle the excessive cold, but there are steps you can follow to safeguard your mobile device from the cold so it can keep working as it should.

What Problems Can Confront Your Phone During A Polar Vortex?

Phones shutting down due to severe cold is not restricted to smartphones only. Several phone users have had identical problems with other battery-powered devices, such as Bluetooth headphones. However, the problem does not only happen during extreme cold, but extreme hot weather can also give the same result.

Such problems can be understood as the smartphones use Lithium-Ion batteries presently. To make provision for power, these batteries make use of liquid electrolytes, placed between the two kinds of electrodes in the battery.

During severe weather conditions like a polar vortex, the liquid electrolytes freeze and then begin to suffer difficulties in sending energy to the mobile phone. If the temperature does not stop decreasing, the battery could stop working, which leads to your phone switching itself off.

In a recent interview with Wired, an electrical engineer at Northeastern University who goes by the name, Hanumant Singh, said: “Lithium-ion batteries suffer so badly in freezing temperatures because they have very little internal resistance.” The expert also talked about the batteries dying within 300 seconds after exposure to temperatures cooler than -35 degrees Fahrenheit.

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What Has Apple, Android Phone Makers Said About This?

Smartphone manufacturers know about this issue and view it as a normal reaction in severe conditions like the polar vortex. They even dished out steps to follow on how to safeguard your mobile device from cold and how to use it in extreme hot or cold conditions.

For example, Apple asks you to use the iPhone in “ambient temperatures” between 32 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit because severe conditions could lead to its malfunctioning.

They continued, “Using an iOS device in very cold conditions outside of its operating range might temporarily shorten battery life and could cause the device to turn off.”

They also said that the phone will work the normal way when it returns to ambient temperatures.

Apple advised that no one should engage in using the iOS devices in hot conditions as it can render its battery useless. They urge users to store the device in temperatures between -4 to 113 degrees Fahrenheit.

Apple’s take on how their devices should be used in severe weather situations is identical to what Android phone manufacturers are recommending. Samsung has also said severe cold and hot situations can damage your phone’s battery. The company from Korea warns users to not abandon their mobile devices in the glove compartment of their cars if the temperature outside is not favorable.

“A common myth is that batteries last longer if they are put in the freezer. This is not correct and can damage your battery,” Samsung said.

Meanwhile, Google says you can use the Pixel 2 between 32 and 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

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How You Can Protect Your Mobile Phone From Cold

You must ensure you do all you can to not expose your phone to severe cold. But sometimes this can be impossible, so to safeguard your device, keep it in an insulated case or in your jacket pocket closer to your body as you dash out to the cold.

If you see weather that can make your phone really cold, turn it off yourself. Wait till its warm again and turn it on. Be also aware that you should not engage in charging a phone that is extremely hot or cold if you cherish its battery.

Ensure you do not answer any calls outside of your house else it can turn itself off when you least expect. If the phone is being used to seek directions, try locating a warmer location, like a coffee spot, to make use of the app. As you enter your automobile, leave the phone in your pocket until the temperature is better.

If your mobile device goes off due to cold as you stand outside your home, please get back in the house as soon as possible, wait for minutes for the device to warm up, and then switch it on. If it doesn’t respond, use your charger and be patient with it to restart itself.

Another remedy that would let you use your phone is ensuring an extra battery pack is on you at the time. This spare battery can be useful if your main battery is drained out, of course, you must’ve kept the spare battery warm too.

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